“My biggest inspiration has always been Johannesburg. For all of its challenges and all of its flaws, I very much feel that the lifeblood of my conceptual thinking comes from the conditions that we find in the city. And that has been my greatest teacher”, says Vally.
Her career has followed an extraordinary trajectory from being selected by the World Economic Forum as one of its Young Global Leaders, a community of the world’s most promising artists, researchers, entrepreneurs, activists, and political leaders, to a TIME100 Next honoree, having been identified as someone who will shape the future of architectural practice. In 2019, Counterspace was invited to design the 20th Serpentine Pavilion in London, making Vally the youngest architect ever to win this internationally renowned commission, and as Artistic Director, Sumayya has creatively shaped the inaugural Islamic Arts Biennale in Jeddah (January – April 23, 2023). She is currently collaborating on the design of the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Presidential Center for Women and Development in Monrovia, Liberia, the first presidential library dedicated to a female head of state.
Future Podcast participants include Mark Read, Owner/Director of the Everard Read Gallery in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Franschoek and London, Cinga Samson, a South African artist known for his figurative oil paintings and self portraits, and two of the ANNA Award Finalists, Nindya Bucktowar and Alexandra-Naledi Holtman.
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